Photographing Hummingbirds or Spinning Models, is pretty much the same. You have got to catch them just at the right moment, and have your camera focused, ready and set. Not a gardening post, but a photography adventure. So what was I up to this past Friday?
I am so excited and could not wait to tell you all about it. I went to my first studio shoot with my photography group. Well, not all of them, this one was just for WOMEN only. Our leader held a special shoot for us women because none of us were showing up at the figure shoots.
Too many guys I guess, I know I felt a little uncomfortable shooting nude women in amongst a room full of guys. I have sketched nude models in art classes filled with guys, but for some reason this seemed a bit different.
I can not even explain why, but now that I have done this once, I do not feel so self-conscious amongst the guys. Partially because my images came out pretty nice and can hold their own with a few of the gents, but also because it did not seem any different from sitting down to sketch.
It was all about the lighting, and how it draped the form. You did not even really notice that she was nude, just like sketching, you concentrate on the what you are doing to produce your art.
I did not have a flash for my camera with me, and used a hotshoe setup, soft boxes, reflectors and umbrellas that our leader supplied. The hotshoe remote controlled the soft box and strobe light from my camera. It was a great experience shooting in the studio, and I would love to get some lights and reflectors myself.
I have done this before, but with architectural models, not people models. Lighting a stationary, inanimate object is much simpler I think. I did retouch these images in Photoshop. It gave me a chance to show my editing skills.
Outdoor lighting on moving subjects seems less trying, but I bet once I am accustomed to lighting setup, it will be similar to understanding outdoor lighting. The warmth of the lights, the angles, the intensity, - using reflected light, diffused light and specular light.
The images are of our model before she disrobed, and I did ask her permission to use the images on my blog. I explained that I wanted to tell you all about my experience, and she was fine letting me use a few of the fully clothed images. I also told her my blog is G-rated. And we talked about how any professional photographer reading here and living locally can leave a comment to set up a shoot with her. So if you are interested, it goes through our group leader, and I forward on the email address.
The model was an aerial silk artist. She would move through the air on the silk with grace and skill.
I told the other lady photographers that I am so used to shooting flowers, birds, bugs, and bees,that this maybe quite a challenge. Our model was mostly moving and this became difficult with the stationary lighting and a group of roving photographers.
I could move the lights, but then would have gotten in someone’s way. I would love to do the lighting setup and have it just right, but it became a bit of luck to catch her when the light was good. I have many images with the face in shadow and that is not good for any kind of people photos.
Other images, working in soft focus, I ended up with the focus not on the eyes. Again, this is something you want whether working with birds, bugs or people. You want the eyes sharp and clear. I so wish I could show you my photos because they really are very beautiful. Maybe not in a technical sense necessarily, but I was happy for a first timer in this genre of photography. I got some very artsy shots, some soft, and some with rim lighting and contrast. I had a great time. Different than bugs and flowers, but just as interesting and pretty. And I love a challenge, but will be sticking with bugs, birds and flowers.
Back to flowers, an Artist’s garden up next.